Thursday, 12 September 2013

Take a STAND Against the Chamber of Commerce

Good afternoon Regina!!

This amazing individual did what I hope many other members of the Regina Chamber of Commerce are doing, and sent in their honest feedback regarding their disgusting tactic of purposely misleading their membership regarding the Wastewater Treatment Plant Referendum. I want to extend my congratulations to this individual and hope that more join the effort to not only work to VOTE INFORMED on September 25, but also to tell those that deliberately LIE to you just what you truly think of their tactics.

Attention Regina City Council, Senior City Administration and Regina Chamber of Commerce:  
Respect Democracy and tell people the TRUTH about the referendum!!

From: Orion Paradis
Engineer, Producer at SoulSound 
*Posted with express written permission from Mr. Paradis

I just received the latest "ChamberLink" magazine which I assume they started sending me because I run a small business - I was very dismayed by their coverage on the P3 Wastewater question.

Here is the email I sent them:


I was very disturbed to find that new Regina ChamberLink Magazine (Sept 2013) has a very biased and uninformative article about the upcoming referendum, which leads with the cover quote "Would YOU like to pay higher utility fees".

Obviously, no one would, but there is no way one can say for sure that a P3 model will deliver lower rates over the body of the 27 year contract - this is misleading your readership by painting a black & white picture of higher rates vs continued public management.

I also did not like the way that unions are demonized as having some kind of hidden agenda - are decent working hours, wages and health benefits some kind of communist plot from 1950, or can we agree that unions are made of regular Canadians who have the right to negotiate on their own behalf?

I also must take exception to the enlarged quote on the first page of the article "Ultimately we are asking voters to ask this one simple question: Who do you think really has your best interest in mind, the people you elected to act on your behalf or an organization backed by the largest public sector union in Canada"

I would point out that the "people elected" in Ottawa are trying to push an ideological model on our city by dangling this money which comes with "you must P3" strings attached - why does the federal government care to interfere with the democracy in Regina - they should be giving us this money in good faith and letting it be used in the model we choose to adopt - not attempting to force our hand.

As well, our "people elected" in Regina (with the exception of Councillor Shawn Fraser) have repeatedly shown that they are more interested in getting the P3 deal pushed through, than dealing with the hassle of engaging in a healthy democratic debate with their own electorate. From attempting to change the petition rules for number of signatures needed, to discounting signatures based on minor technicalities, to engaging in robocalls and finally spending hundreds of thousands of tax payers own dollars to get them to vote "No" instead of educating them to make their own decision - these are all signs of a broken democracy.

I do not trust a council or mayor who believes this is the path to proper civic governance - there were only 33% of Regina voters who elected this council, so I think we can safely assume they do not have the majority mandate without public consultation on important issues such as this one.

Waste water IS water - it goes back into the watershed and continues to cycle though our environment - this is a public trust which can not be turned over to a "for profit" entity, even in joint partnership. It is city councils responsibility to manage this trust for the people of Regina and those down river of our city. It is the councils job to figure out how provide this service without offloading any of the the accounting and responsibility to a private firm.

Please remove me from your mailing list - I have no interest in your magazine and will work very hard to help the YES side win."

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